Hello everyone! And welcome to my feature post about The Wonderling by Mira Bartók (published today!). This is a children’s/middle grade book that is “[r]eminiscent of classic literary odysseys and the best of contemporary fantasy, with a sprinkling of steampunk” (how it was pitched to me by the publisher, and I love the sound of that mixture!) I, for one, really enjoy classic novels, as well as fantasy, and steampunk, so this book sounds like it’s right up my alley. I will be reading it too, although sadly not until later this year or early in 2018 due to my crazy reading schedule. I did receive a copy before the pub date, though, and I didn’t want for any of you to miss the opportunity to either read this book, or at the very least, get it on your radar (is that the correct phrase? English sounds so foreign to me sometimes….and then I remind myself that it’s my third language. Hah.) Anyway, here is more about the book before I go and ramble some more:
How well does this book book with my current blog theme? Ah!
But alright, yes, the book details!
Title: The Wonderling
Author: Mira Bartók
Genre: Children’s, Middle Grade, Fantasy
Publisher: Candlewick Press
Date published: September 26, 2017
Page Count: 450
Synopsis: Mira Bartok tells the story of Arthur, a shy, fox-like foundling with only one ear and a desperate desire to belong, as he seeks his destiny.
Have you been unexpectedly burdened by a recently orphaned or unclaimed creature? Worry not! We have just the solution for you!
Welcome to the Home for Wayward and Misbegotten Creatures, an institution run by evil Miss Carbunkle, a cunning villainess who believes her terrified young charges exist only to serve and suffer. Part animal and part human, the groundlings toil in classroom and factory, forbidden to enjoy anything regular children have, most particularly singing and music. For the Wonderling, an innocent-hearted, one-eared, fox-like eleven-year-old with only a number rather than a proper name — a 13 etched on a medallion around his neck — it is the only home he has ever known.
But unexpected courage leads him to acquire the loyalty of a young bird groundling named Trinket, who gives the Home’s loneliest inhabitant two incredible gifts: a real name — Arthur, like the good king in the old stories — and a best friend. Using Trinket’s ingenious invention, the pair escape over the wall and embark on an adventure that will take them out into the wider world and ultimately down the path of sweet Arthur’s true destiny.
I really really really love foxes. Can’t you tell? But back to The Wonderling. The publisher’s pitch to me about this book really caught my attention, even though I read very very little middle grade. I have read and reviewed a few children’s picture books here and there, because they’re fun and they’re easy to read quickly. Middlegrade, however, takes a little longer than a picture book (because there’s more writing, yes, I know, haha) and I tend to avoid them because of this, and the fact that I cannot relate to a main character / narrator so young. The synopsis, as well as the cover and the interior art for The Wonderling really drew me in, though, and I am very excited to read it and share my thoughts about it with you all!
– About the Author –
Mira Bartók is a Chicago-born artist and the author of the critically acclaimed New York Times bestselling memoir, THE MEMORY PALACE which was an ALA Notable Book and won the National Book Critics Circle Award for Best Autobiography in 2012. She is also the author of twenty-eight books for children. Her writing has appeared in literary journals and anthologies and has been noted in The Best American Essays series. Her most recent book, THE WONDERLING, an illustrated middle grade fantasy, is forthcoming from Candlewick Press in 2017. The feature film based on the book, and directed by Stephen Daldry (Billy Elliot, The Hours, The Reader) is due out in 2018. A You can find Mira at www.mirabartok.com
– PURCHASE LINKS –
THANKS SO MUCH FOR READING! HAVE YOU READ THIS BOOK? AND IF SO, WHAT DID YOU THINK? IF YOU HAVEN’T READ IT YET, DO YOU WANT TO, OR NOT? HOW COME? LET ME KNOW YOUR THOUGHTS IN THE COMMENTS BELOW!